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Post-viability abortion bans fail in New Mexico

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SANTA FE, New Mexico, February 11, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) – Two bills to prohibit abortions after viability narrowly failed in a state Senate committee vote on Tuesday.

According to the pro-abortion news website RH Reality Check, the Public Affairs Committee voted 5-4 to table two versions of legislation that would have stopped legal abortion after doctors detect that the unborn child is able to live outside the mother's womb. One of the bills would have allowed exceptions in the cases of rape, incest, sexual abuse, and life of the mother; the other had just one exception, for the life of the mother.

While RH Reality Check described the bills as banning abortions at 20 weeks' gestation, the sponsor of the bills, Senator Bill Sharer, told LifeSiteNews that "viability is the standard, but you started looking at 20 weeks."

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"Viability is defined 'can you live outside the womb,' even with artificial assistance," said Sharer, saying "that is kind of a common definition around the world."

The U.S. is one of seven countries that allows late-term abortions.

Asked whether he expected his bills to fail, given the Democratic majority on the committee, Sharer said that "it's part of their platform – abortion anytime, for anybody, anywhere, for any reason. It's a 5-4 committee, although I was hoping we could convince one of the Democrats, but the pressure was enormous in that room."

Sharer said that he did not plan to push any pro-life legislation before the current session ends in a week. However, he said, "I do think it is important that we keep raising this issue that little people are people, too."

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